Sunday 30 December 2012

dudeing at Doi Inthanon

Sometimes you pack loads of things in each day, so much so that you're totally shattered by the evening. That's how it has been recently. So I'll take you back a couple of days to a leisurely day at Doi Inthanon, Thailand's highest mountain. You're not going to read about White-rumped Falcons and Black-tailed Crakes here, as this was a kind of dudey smash and grab/reacquaint myself with the place type of trip, as I did the place thoroughly a decade ago. But Karen and I still got up there for dawn and sunrise.
There was a queue for the summit car park, as this is holiday time of year and also when Thais get excited about the phenomenon of frost, a rare event that demands copious amounts of photos apparently. Birds quickly started to show, with sunbirds ever present - both Green-tailed and Mrs Gould's.
Mrs Gould's Sunbird

Green-tailed Sunbird
A walk around the mossy boardwalk Lord of the Rings style was punctuated by a White-browed Shortwing, a few phylloscs including Ashy-throated Leaf Warbler but most bizarrely was a bird that flew in calling. I must admit that, at the time I didn't realise the true significance but when I heard a Brambling calling, that's exactly what I got as it flew in to the bushes just a few yards away. A nice female, apparently c.6th for Thailand! I never realised that finding rare birds could be so underwhelming. Give me a pitta any day!

Chestnut-tailed Minlas and Dark-backed Sibias showed nicely too - the latter coming to flowers in the botanical gardens near the two chedis.
Chestnut-tailed Minla

Dark-backed Sibia
Enjoyed seeing Snowy-browed Flycatcher again, while a walk along the jeep track at km 37.5 revealed some nice bits including a Chestnut-crowned Warbler, a couple of Rufous-winged Fulvettas amongst the much commoner Grey-cheeked Fulvettas as well as a Blyth's Leaf Warbler, a Grey-headed Canary Flycatcher and a couple of Short-billed Minivets. Lower down the mountain, a Slaty-backed Forktail showed briefly at Wachirathan waterfall and we had a nice bit of a chill out at Mr Daeng's. Time has passed that place by!
Grey-cheeked Fulvetta

We got ourselves back into Chiang Mai for the evening, ready for the hordes at the night market. A strange contrast to a day up the mountain.

1 comment:

  1. Cracking pics mate, all that way and find a Brambling ! Amazing....